A model of the Angry Birds character “Red” is on display in the reception area of Rovio Entertainment Oy’s headquarters in Espoo, Finland, on Thursday, February 28, 2019.
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Japanese gaming giant Sega announced on Monday that it had made a €706 million ($776 million) offer to Angry Birds puzzle game maker Rovio Entertainment Oyj of Finland.
The deal would cover all of Rovio’s outstanding shares and options, valuing the shares at €9.25 per share, a premium of about 19% to their pre-announcement closing price, Sega said. She values the options at EUR 1.48.
Rovio’s board of directors supports the offer, the company added.
Rovio games have been downloaded over 5 billion times, according to Monday’s release. Since then, the Angry Birds franchise has been licensed for other entertainment and consumer products.
Founded in 1960, Tokyo-based Sega is best known for its Sonic the Hedgehog and Total War franchises, as well as consoles like the Sega Genesis/Mega Drive, which were popular outside of Japan in the 1990s.
The company aims to leverage Rovio to expand its presence in the mobile games market and announced that it would leverage its live mobile game development capabilities to power development of mobile versions of its existing games.
The Wall Street Journal previously reported that the Rovio deal is expected to be worth around $1 billion.
Rovio shares are up 17.8% as of 11:00 am London time.
Shares in Sega Sammy, Sega’s holding company after it merged with game maker Sammy in 2004, ended 4.2% lower on Monday before the acquisition was announced.
“Among the fast-growing global gaming market, the mobile gaming market has particularly high potential, and it has been SEGA’s long-term goal to accelerate its expansion in this space,” said Haruki Satomi, Group CEO of Sega Sammy, in a Explanation.
Angry Birds is “loved all over the world,” he said. “I am confident that by combining the brands, characters, fan bases and corporate culture and functionality of both companies, significant synergies will be created in the future.”
Rovio CEO Alexandre Pelletier-Normand said Red, the main character in Angry Birds, and Sonic the Hedgehog are “two globally recognized and iconic characters developed by two remarkably complementary companies, with a global reach spanning across mobile, PCs/Consoles and beyond. “